Ideas for Organizing a Kitchen Pantry
Make the most of your pantry with these organizing tips
By Theresa Leschmann
Organizing your pantry can be a daunting endeavor, but by breaking up the job into smaller tasks and planning ahead, you can make the job manageable and efficient. It may be as simple as adding some containers, hooks and racks or as complex as repositioning the shelving. The extent of your pantry organization project will depend on your needs, time and budget.
Purge and Sort
Remove everything from the pantry. Throw away any old or expired food items. Sort the remaining items into groups you might expect to see in a grocery store: canned goods, boxed food items, foods in envelopes or pouches and so on. Group canned goods by type such as vegetables, soups, sauces and canned meats. Do the same with the remaining items.
Clean the pantry thoroughly. Before you put any items back in the pantry, spend some time planning the layout. Items used most frequently should be at eye level, while less often used items can be placed higher or lower. If the pantry is deep, rolling shelves that pull out like drawers on tracks make it easier to find items in the back without having to move everything else. If these are not in your budget, consider plastic wash tubs as sorters. Store like items in each tub, then label the front and place on the shelves. Locating an item is then simply a matter of shifting a tub or two to reach the desired tub. Tubs are available in a variety of colors, often for as little as a dollar or two. Designate shelves for specific types of items and label the front edge of the shelf.
Use bulk plastic containers to store items that you purchase in boxes or bags, such as pancake mix or flour. The containers are available in many colors and sizes and make stacking and storage more manageable. Label the containers to make identification easier. Use tilted wire racks for canned goods, which allow the next can to roll forward when one is taken. Install over-the-door wire racks or clear plastic trade show bags to store vitamin bottles, seasoning pouches or jars and other small items that often get lost in a pantry. Hooks or hanging baskets can be used to store bags of potatoes, onions and apples, freeing up space on the shelves for other items.
About the Author
Theresa Leschmann is a regular contributor to DexKnows.
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